Communicating externally with shareholders

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My slides for a talk at the American Library Association 2010 meeting about communicating with external audiences, especially elected officials.

My slides for a talk at the American Library Association 2010 meeting about communicating with external audiences, especially elected officials.

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  • 1. Communicating externally with shareholders
    Shabbir J. Imber Safdar
    Twitter: @ShabbirSafdar
    Conference hashtag: #ala10
    American Library Association Annual Meeting - 2010
    Washington, DC
  • 2. Be able to demonstrate value of your library to its community to “funders” (trustees, regents and/or elected officials)
    And yet, you don’t want to become highly politicized for a myriad of reasons (lobbying prohibitions, messaging conflict with lobbying staff, maintenance of non-partisan status)
    What do you want?
  • 3. Who is your communications target? Your funding source
    Regentsand trustees (administration)
    State and local legislators:
    State Senate, Assembly, and County/City Councils
    State and local executives:
    Governors, county executives, and mayors
    Staff of anyone above
  • 4. Very young, very overworked, and extremely wary.
    Always balancing thorough research for their job with the danger of one-sided information.
    Assumes everyone has an agenda.
    Ultimately trying to figure out the best advice to give their boss.
    What’s it like to be “staff”?
  • 5. “What is the benefit of this library to the community it serves?”
    “What is the value of the library in measurable terms?”
    “What recent cuts has this library endured?”
    “What arguments can you provide to help preserve library funding?”
    “What would be the benefit to the community of additional funding?”
    What likely questions do you need to be prepared for?
  • 6. How industries make their case
  • 7. Business Activity: On average, in fiscal year 2007, each dollar of NIH funding generated more than twice as much in state economic output. That is, an overall investment of $22.846 billion from NIH generated a total of $50.537 billion in new state business activity in the form of increased output of goods and services.
    Jobs and Wages: In fiscal year 2007, NIH grants and contracts created and supported more than 350,000 jobs that generated wages in excess of $18 billion in the 50 states. The average wage associated with the jobs created was $52,000.
    Families USA 2007 study, “In Your Own Backyard”
  • 8. State impact of film industry
  • 9. “The Economic Contribution of Wisconsin Public Libraries to the Economy of Wisconsin” by Northstar Economics
  • 10. “Public Libraries – A Wise Investment”, by Library Research Service, March 2009
  • 11. Library Usage For City of Clive, Iowa
  • 12. Connect it with high profile issues, such as:
    Job Creation: Usage of Internet-connected computers or other library facilities for job hunting or training
    Education: Usage of library facilities for early childhood education
    Find out if your elected official has a fondness for an issue that’s also active in your facility by reading the issues they promote on their official website
    Making your usage data more relevant
  • 13. Most legislators send physical or email newsletter to their constituents.
    Identify the events or services at your facility that a legislator would want to tell their constituents about.
    Feed them to the legislator’s staff for inclusion in their constituent newsletter.
    It’s hard to keep quiet about service cuts to a library whose events you’ve been promoting.
    Your calendar has power
  • 14. “Library Benefits in an Economic Downturn”, by “Support Wisconsin Libraries”
    “Economic Impact of Public Libraries” by the WI Dept. of Public Instruction (CO, FL, IN, PA, SC + local studies)
    “The Library as Strategic Investment”, by Paula T. Kaufman
    A copy of these slides is on SlideShare at: